Finding Home

My all-consuming love affair

Good morning from foggy Vermont. I have a solution for you. When you feel like you have no control over your life, give away your Saran Wrap. Yesterday my friend Kathy and I spent a great morning together, and she indulged my all-consuming love affair with the bulk food section at a new City Market. Besides all the grains, nuts, syrups, and coffee beans, I found a whole row of bulk liquid dish washing detergent, hand soap, and dish soap, all good quality, although I didn’t have time to figure out whether each was cost effective. Anyway, on the road to zero waste, let’s say I hit the jackpot.

We also traveled to Shelburne Farms and took to the walking paths, paths that were just like the road I used every day growing up at the farm. Dirt, lined with fence posts, green pasture land on each side, and an occasional wandering brook. I felt it in my bones, this shocking reconnection with my own feet to the bare farm earth.

My sister and I walked that road as we herded the cows to their day pasture before the bus came. I walked that road every afternoon, rain or shine, when the bus driver dropped me off at the main road. I divided the journey home into three parts. First to the pond. Second to the hill. Third to the brick stoop. I didn’t mind getting soaked so much, but I did worry about the precious books in my not so water-proof knapsack. There were scary parts–the mean dog at the top of the road, the rising waters of the pond, and my imagination concocting all kinds of terrible scenarios waiting for me just over the hill. Bears? Coy dogs? Men with guns? Sometimes you have to be brave when you are little.

But most times I liked the walk, because I knew what was at the end of it. My mother, at the old Glenwood stove, stirring something up for dinner. And the comics from the Burlington Free Press, read at the kitchen table as I drank a big glass of Nestle’s Quik topped off by two scoops of vanilla ice-cream.

But back to my bulk items. I was telling Kathy yesterday that I wanted to replace our use of tissue with handkerchiefs. We grew up with them, and my Dad used them until he died. She thought my idea was totally gross, as did my husband, so I guess that’s a no to switching out Kleenex at Soft Landing. But I’m thinking about it for myself. I like the idea of collecting ten or so pretty, vintage handkerchiefs and placing them in a mason jar for easy retrieval. I’ll let you know how it all works out.

That’s it for now. Check back next week for another segment of Finding Home.





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Finding Home

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